Natural and cultural resources
Dyfed Archaeological Trust maintains and enhances the regional Historic Environment Record, which is used for a variety of purposes including a basis for providing historic environment advice to a wide range of organisations and individuals, a source of information on the historic environment for community groups, local history/archaeological societies, students, academics and anyone else with an interest in archaeology and history. Information is mostly held in digital format, with the core data made publically available through the Archwilio website – www.archwilio.org.uk This is a map-based database/website. However, a common criticism from users of the HER is that it is difficult to understand the geographic data, as it is ‘point’ data and not polygonal data. This means that a large monument, such as a hillfort, is represented by just a single dot on the map, and, due to the vagaries of grid referencing, this dot is not always over the monument. Ideally the full geographic extent of the monument would be shown as a polygon.
This pilot project will establish the methodology and procedures for creating digital polygons of sites and monuments recorded on the Dyfed Historic Environment Record, drawing on best practice developed elsewhere in the UK and Europe. As part of the project, following establishment of the methodology and procedures, polygons will be created for sites and monuments in three community council areas in Pembrokeshire.
The main outcomes of the project included a more easily understood and thus more useful Historic Environment Record; a better maintained, conserved and promoted historic environment; better promotion of sustainable development that will not impact on the environment. The Project did successfully address the issue of communities not fully understanding historical records and worked towards ensuring that accurate advice is now being provided by improved records on the Historic Environment Records. The project also provided opportunities for individuals to participate and learn new digital skills. The project did open up opportunities for volunteers to learn new, transferable skills and gave communities greater ownership of historic environment assets.
The Project team tell us that ‘a larger pilot project covering a larger geographic area would have provided better results and decreased the burden of creating many more digital polygons in the future’.
‘’ We are anticipating rolling out the project across the whole of SW Wales, although we realise that this will be a long term project. This pilot has provided us with the methodology.’’
Arwain Sir Benfro and the LEADER Programme concluded in December 2021 once all projects were completed and funding exhausted. There is now no dedicated support upon the completion of the LEADER Programme in Pembrokeshire. Should you have any queries, PLANED as the previous administrators, may be able to assist, or similarly for wider questions on the LEADER Programme in Wales, please contact the Wales European Funding Office (WEFO).